“Anatomy is the great ocean of intelligence
upon which the true physician must sail”
R. SHANE TUBBS*
The surgeon John E. Link (1893) stated, “Anatomy is
the great ocean of intelligence upon which the true phy-
sician must sail.” This quote was made in the Journal
of the American Medical Association in 1893. Link was a
graduate of Chicago Medical College in 1865. He was
also a surgeon for the U.S. Volunteers during the Civil
War, a faculty member at Indianapolis Medical College
and later, surgeon at Terre Haute for the Vandalia
Railroad. He died in 1912 at the age of 73.
Such an ocean of intelligence borne out in anatomy is
seen in this issue of Clinical Anatomy. Papers that will
surely be of interest to our readership include the follow-
ing: Right-left propensity of cardiogenic cerebral embo-
lism in standard versus bovine aortic arch variants,
teaching of the anatomical sciences with a blended learn-
ing approach, positional relationship between the pector-
alis major and external abdominal oblique muscles for
consideration during dual-plane breast augmentation
procedures, the anatomy of the perineal branch of the
sciatic nerve, extrinsic and intrinsic blood supply to the
optic chiasm, pictorial essay of ultrasound-reconstructed
coronal plane images of the uterus in different uterine
pathologies, 3D reconstruction (Fig. 1) of peripheral
nerves from optical projection tomography (OPT) images
as a method for studying fascicular interconnections and
intraneural plexuses, and systematic reviews versus
narrative reviews in clinical anatomy and using such
methodological approaches in the era of evidence-based
These topics in this issue of the Journal illustrate
that today more than ever, clinical anatomy has a very
important role in medical education and the continued
best practice of medicine and surgery.
Link JE. 1893. Advancement of Surgery. J Am Med Assoc 20:198–199.
Fig. 1. 3D reconstruction of fascicles of the median
nerve. (a) The fascicles are not rectilinear; (b) 3D recon-
struction technique allowed fascicles to be clearly
*Correspondence to: R Shane Tubbs, Seattle Science Foundation,
Seattle, WA 98122, USA. E-mail: shanet@seattlesciencefoundation.
Published online in Wiley Online Library (wileyonline library.
com). DOI: 10.1002/ca.23067
2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Clinical Anatomy 31:305 (2018)